Skill up on all you need to know with bite sized travel news designed specifically to help you, the Travel Agent, be your best today and tomorrow.

1. “People were standing in the aisles”: airline investigates claims of overloaded aircraft

Travel Agent PIA

A Pakistani airline is investigating claims of a recent flight carrying an excessive number of passengers, some of which say they were forced to stand in aisle.

The 4.5-hour Pakistan International Airlines service from Karachi in Pakistan to Medina in Saudi Arabia on 20 January is alleged to have carried 416 passengers, seven more than the total 409 capacity of the Boeing 777, reported.

Passengers told local media that they saw some travellers carrying handwritten boarding passes and others standing throughout the flight.

Read on


2. Royal Caribbean joins Disney with lifeguards on its ships

Travel Agent RCL

Royal Caribbean is following Disney’s lead by becoming the second cruise line worldwide to offer families peace of mind with the introduction of lifeguards onboard all its vessels.

Starting this week on Oasis of the Seas and rolling out across the 24-ship fleet over the next four months, Royal Caribbean will station at least one licensed lifeguard at every pool on each vessel during opening hours.

Lifeguards will wear distinctive red and white uniforms and will be hired for the sole purpose of protecting ship passengers in and around the water.

Read on


3. Britain, Asia & Europe departures are good-to-go with Trafalgar

Trafalgar London

‘Making life easier for Agents’, that’s pretty much Trafalgar’s raison d’être in 2017 with major incentives allowing consultants to experience destinations first-hand, straightforward deals, unique offerings and now 100% confirmed departures.

The tour operator revealed this morning that a large number of its itineraries are good-to-go this year, including those in Britain, Asia AND Europe.

This means consultants will be able to book their clients on any itineraries in the three regions with the confidence of knowing that they’re guaranteed to set off.

Read on


4. Magellan signs historic corporate deal


Magellan Travel Group has signed a preferred partnership agreement with corporate travel technology provider, Serko, giving the Agency group’s members access to tools and services that will support and propel individual member growth as well as underpin the strategic growth plans of the broader Group.

Magellan CEO, Andrew Macfarlane has said: “We continue to act in the best interests of our members and negotiating industry competitive agreements to support their business growth ambitions remains a key focus. I am very pleased to have signed such a competitive deal with Serko, this is great news for Magellan and our relationship with Serko long into the future.”

Darrin Grafton, Serko Chief Executive officer commented: “We are really pleased to have signed this agreement with the Magellan group and we expect it to be a successful and enduring partnership. We see good potential in the Magellan Travel Group and we look forward to growing both businesses over the next few years.”


5. Clients save $1,000 per couple on India tours with Helen Wong

Helen Wong India

Helen Wong is celebrating the release of its new ‘Fascinating India by Train’ tour for 2017/18 by offering your clients a $1,000 per couple saving on select departures.

The savings apply to four departures – November 9 and December 7, 2017, and January 25 and March 29, 2018 – for bookings and deposits made before March 10, 2017.

The ‘Fascinating India by Train’ program includes return flights from Australia as well as pre- and post-accommodation and tours. It also ticks off a number of India must-dos including a high tea at a royal palace, seeing elusive tigers on a safari at Ranthambore, retail therapy at the bazaars, visiting UNESCO World Heritage sites and a 30-minute spa therapy treatment.


6. INCENTIVE: Win a 6-night luxury canal cruise for 2


Barge Travel Connection, Australia’s leading specialist in barge canal cruising in Europe, is giving Travel Agents the chance to win a six-night luxury cruise if they book one for their clients.

The offer is valid on new booking made before 31 August 2017. The winner will set sail on a cruise with their plus one to France or Scotland in a twin or double cabin with an en-suite bathroom. The prize also includes daily excursions and wine tasting sessions; all gourmet meals accompanied by fine wines; an open bar with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks; and a signed copy of Rick Stein’s French Odyssey book.

For full details and bookings, contact Barge Travel Connection on 1300 150 725, email [email protected].


7. Fiji Tourism appoints new Trade Partnership Manager for Australia

Fiji 2

Tourism Fiji has announced the appointment of Mr Jason Sacriz as Trade Partnerships Manager- Australia, commencing this week.

Announcing the appointment, Tourism Fiji CEO, Matthew Stoeckel said this newly-created role underlines the importance of trade relationships and reinforces the determination of Tourism Fiji to deliver the very highest standards of service to the industry.

Mr Sacriz brings a wealth of experience to the role, with close to 20 years in travel and tourism, having worked in a range of marketing and product development roles and held senior positions in destination management with the Hong Kong Tourism Board, Macau Government Tourist Office and Destination NSW. Mr Sacriz has also held management roles in the wholesale and cruise sectors.

In his new role, Mr Sacriz will focus on maintaining and developing relations with key wholesalers and retailers and all operators in the travel industry.


8. Carnival adds first international rep to Aussie team

Carnival Australia 2

Carnival Cruise Line has added a new member to the team, Angela Wilson, who will focus on driving awareness and promoting the US-based Carnival fleet among Australian Travel Agents and wholesalers.

Ms Wilson, who previously worked at Expedia, said she was excited to jump onboard at Carnival: “With Carnival Horizon launching next year and new 14-day sailings to Hawaii, Alaska and the Caribbean on offer there are more opportunities than ever before for Australian agents to sell a Carnival cruise, so I’m looking forward to helping to increase agents’ Carnival sales.”

Ms Wilson said she was also hoping to boost the popular Mexican cruise market, with a growing number of Australians taking advantage of direct flights to L.A. to join the cruise line’s departures from Long Beach to Mexico.

For more about Carnival’s international sailings across Carnival’s fleet of 25 ships, email Angela at: [email protected]


9. What you could WIN at this year’s DMS roadshows

DMS Connect Roadshow

This month, DMS Destination Marketing Services will hit the road for its annual roadshows around Australia, during which Agents can learn about the company’s partners and go in the running to WIN incredible prizes.

As per tradition, there’ll be dynamic prizes to aspirational destinations including Bali, Boracay, Buenos Aires, Cebu, Dallas, Dubai, Fiji, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, Manila, Phuket, Rio and Zagreb.

Generous sponsors include, Emirates, Hawaiian Airlines, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, LATAM Airlines, Malaysia Airlines with our major sponsors, Air New Zealand and Philippine Airlines

It’s not too late to register your attendance, click here to learn more about DMS Connect or to request an invitation.


10. Silver Muse completes her sea trials

Travel Agent Silver Muse

Silversea Cruises’ newest ship is on track to launch in April this year, having just successfully completed its sea trials.

Silver Muse passed all assessments in accordance with international rules and regulations, and according to the cruise line will be ready for her formal christening in Monaco on 19 April 2017.

The addition of Silver Muse will expand Silversea’s fleet to nine ships and will, once again significantly raise the bar in the ultra-luxury cruise market.

What are your thoughts on today’s travel news?